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Hi Mike - welcome to iKC! We're glad you're here. Normally I would have welcomed you on your page - but since you jumped right in and started a discussion on that fabulous Colt Serengeti skinner, I thought I would just welcome you here.
Colt is one of my favorite brands - they have always licensed their name on some wonderful knives. So - do you want just the short answer or do want all I know?
The quick, short, and safe answer to your question as to if your knife is legitimately number 1 of 1200 is....Yes, because there is no reason to believe otherwise. But you have to understand - there is more than one series of the CT 7 special edition by Colt, numbers 1-1200. I am aware of three, with yours being one of them. To add to it, United Cutlery also produced a licensed version of the Tak Fukuta skinner (Think Gil Hibben knives).
So you see - I find it very easy and plausible to believe that you own #1 of 1200 of the Colt Serengeti skinning knife....Series (solve for x). Can we prove it? Not directly - it's more of considering and listing out all the known facts about how this design was licensed, produced, by whom, in what series, etc.etc.etc., then by process of elimination we come to a conclusion. Both numbers 31 and 653 of the Colt CT 7 sold on Ebay some time ago, each from a different series, and neither of these included the Tak Fukuta (Takao Fukuta) signature on the blade.
If you want to get to the real source and get some provenance for your knife, I suggest you engage TAKBLADE (http://www.takblade.com/), and see if they can't provide you with some solid grit about your knife - or it's series.
As a side note, today, it is the third successor, Kazuhiro Fukuta who makes the knives using the techniques inherited from his father.
Let me know if this satisfies your thirst and helps in any way. If not - let me know and we can discuss in more detail.
Wow... That is one of the most consolidated and concise replies I think I have ever seen on any web forum.
PS I sent TAK and email with an inquiry
Groovy! I hope you get a reply...something more than just a "Thank you for your email....it has been forwarded to our Marketing department". If you do get a reply with substance - please share here with the community - we'd all like to see the follow-up on this.
Besides writing to them,. did you take a look at their Hunting knives catalog? Your skinner in all of it's glory is still a popular and offered model - that's awesome!
I did look at their offerings. Pretty cool stuff.
I have not received a reply yet, but it is also almost midnight in Japan so will likely be awhile yet if I get anything at all.
I have also been told by a guy that seems well versed in these things that this is the handmade prototype submitted to Colt for approval before production which would also kinda explain why it also came with a brown sheath as it was an option for them to choose...
And that very well could be.
As I implied, the other two models that sold had different blade markings, one w/black sheath, the other w/brown. #0683 had the issue number engraved on the cross-piece, whereas #31 had 31/1200 engraved on the blade - and neither of them had Tak's signature along with them.
So while we wait for a response, how about telling us how you came upon #1...give us what you know about it. Us blade-heads love all the juicy stuff! :-)
Without trying to sound pompous, Our business is relatively well connected in the powersports industry and gifts along these lines tend to move freely from one set of hands to another among friends and even just business associates.